The Natural Approach. Stephen Krashen, Tracy Terrell (1981).In Jack C. Richards&Rodgers, Theodore,CUP (2001). Prof. Estela N. Braun, Adjunto Regular Practice II, Didáctica Especial de la Lengua Inglesa, Practicum at Primary School Level.
Back in California:
Terrell taught Spanish. Wished to apply naturalistic principles of SLA.
Stephen Krashen, an applied linguist, built on the rationale. “The Natural Approach”(1983).
Related their approach to the Natural or DIRECT Method.
A)Use of language in communicative situations without recourse to the native language.
B)Teaching without any reference to grammar.
C) Textbook examples.
Approach :theory of language.
Naturalistic language learning in YLE.
Emphasis on EXPOSURE, INPUT, rather than on practice.
Central role of COMPREHENSION.
COMMUNICATION as the primary function of language.
Primacy of MEANING.
Importance of VOCABULARY.
Main Tenets of the Theory:
1. The Acquisition/Learning Hypothesis.
ACQUISITION is the natural way. Unconscious.Understanding language and using it for meaningful communication.
LEARNING :process in which conscious rules about the language are developed.Requires formal teaching and does not lead to acquisition.
2. The Monitor Hypothesis:
Conscious learning can function as a monitor or editor that checks and repairs the output of the acquired system.
3 Conditions to Monitor:
2.Focus on forms.
3.Knowledge of rules.
3. The Natural order Hypothesis.
Based on SLA, Brown and other studies (1978).
Certain grammatical structures or morphemes are acquired before others.
Errors are signs of naturalistic developmental processes.
4. The INPUT Hypothesis:
People acquire language best by being exposed to input that is slightly above their current level of competence.
Clues based on situation, context,extralinguistic information, KOW, make comprehension possible.
Caretaker speech, slower rate, repetition, use of Yes/No more than WH questions help to make the input more COMPREHENSIBLE.
5. The Affective Filter Hypothesis
Krashen considers the learner’s emotional state as a FILTER that passes, impedes or blocks the INPUT necessary to acquisition.
3 kinds of affective or attitudinal variables:
Anxiety (fear of emabarrassment, etc.)
Implications for ELT
Provide lots of comprehensible input.
Use visual aids to help the acquisition of vocabulary.
The focus in the classroom should be on reading and listening;speaking should be allowed to “Emerge”. Silent Period.
Lower the affective filter. Relaxed classroom atmosphere.
For beginner students up to Intermediate.
What they can/won’t be able to do (Page 184)
TPR (James Asher)
Mime, gesture, use of context.
Group work activities.
Whatever minimizes learner’s anxiety and maximizes learner self-confidence.
Processor of comprehensible input.
Learner decisions on when to speak, what to speak about, what linguistic expressions to use.
Pre-production stage: participate in tle language class without need to respond.
Early production stage: respond to familiar questions,fixed conversation.
Speech-emergent phase: role-play, games, personal info and opinions, group problem-solving.
1.Teacher is primary source of comprehensible input.
2. Teacher creates a classroom atmosphere that is interesting and friendly to lower the affective filter.
3. Teacher chooses a rich mix of classroom activities.
ROLE OF INSTRUCTIONAL MATERIALS:
Realia more than textbooks.
Brochures, maps, advertisements, menus, shedules.
Syllabus of topics and situations.
The Natural Approach rejects the formal grammatical organization of language to teach it.It is not used at a native level.
It emphasizes comprehensible and meaningful practice activities , rather than production of grammatically perfect utterances and sentences.